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ATM ANNOUNCES REAL-TIME X-RAY MONITOR FOR DIAMOND ELECTRONICS

 DANBURY, Conn., July 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Advanced Technology Materials, Inc. (ATM), a leading developer of materials and delivery systems used in the manufacture of high-performance diamond electronics, today announced that it plans commercial development of the first portable fiber optic X-ray diffraction (XRD) system for in-situ monitoring of diamond thin films created through chemical vapor deposition (CVD).
 The development of superior diamond thin film technology is critical in manufacturing diamond cold cathodes (DCCs) for high-resolution, low- power flat-panel displays, a potential market of more than $10 billion that includes the portable computer screens and television screens of the future.
 The ability to monitor think film growth in real time allows companies to eliminate consecutive materials tests and costly post-test analyses by telescoping sequences of materials measurements into one testing session. The constant monitoring by XRD also reduces the risk of materials rejection by permitting ongoing adjustment of conditions with the turn of a knob.
 The prototype offers customers flexibility in system set-up -- the basic system takes up no more room than a shoe box and can be connected to processing equipment as needed.
 "ATM's diffraction system paves the way for true intelligent processing of diamond materials and devices, and opens a range of commerical opportunities -- businesses will be able to bring new materials to market much faster," said Dave Kurtz, manager of process control equipment at ATM. "Up until recently, the process required running a series of tests and analyses to measure the effects of different conditions. Now we can see the effect on physical structure the moment we alter a variable."
 Prior to the development of the system, engineers could only monitor basic process conditions such as temperature, pressure and flow rates. Real-time X-ray monitoring of critical compositional and microstructural information not only enhances the development of new processes and structures, but also provides an active feed-back loop, enabling intelligent processing.
 The XRD device is a position-sensitive scintillation detector (PSSD) based on fiber-optics. The PSSD was modified by ATM for use in a reactor environment to simultaneously measure critical film parameters including phase composition, degree crystallinity, texture (preferred orientation), thickness and residual stress.
 In December, in collaboration with The Pennsylvania State University and with funding from Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and the Department of Energy, ATM developed a similar XRD system for real-time analysis of vapor-deposited metal and metal-oxide films.
 ATM develops, manufactures and markets diamond electronics devices critical to the future of display products, including the $1 billion blue LED (Light-Emitting Diodes) market and flat panel displays.
 Incorporated in 1986, the company has grown to more than 65 employees. Total capitalization is in excess of $11 million, primarily from a consortium of venture capital firms led by Sierra Ventures and First Boston.
 -0- 7/22/93
 /CONTACT: Duncan Brown of ATM, 203-794-1100; Tom Bruenig of Miller Communications, 617-536-0470 for ATM/


CO: Advanced Technology Materials, Inc. ST: Connecticut IN: CPR MTC SU: PDT

DD -- NE008 -- 4487 07/22/93 11:27 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 22, 1993
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